Archive of ‘music’ category

Album of the Week 007 ~ 24K Magic by Bruno Mars

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Album : 24K Magic by Bruno Mars

Release Date : November 2016

My Favourite Tracks : 24K Magic, That’s What I Like

Album Notes

I really liked Bruno Mars’ first album, but I haven’t listened to anything he’s done since. I think he’s turned into an artist that I don’t really enjoy that much. A good rule of thumb for me tends to be if you make an appearance on The X Factor, your music probably isn’t for me. Unless you’re Little Mix.

So I feel like 24K Magic is really not my kind of album. It’s catchy enough, but it veers in a direction that I just don’t enjoy all that much. I like the title track, which got caught in my head, but other than that, there’s not much here for me. I particularly object to Versace on the Floor, which just upsets me on every level.

Album of the Week 006 ~ Wolves by Rag’n’Bone Man

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Album : Wolves by Rag’n’Bone Man

Release Date : October 2014

My Favourite Tracks : No Mother, Guilty, Life In Her Yet

Album Notes

Unfortunately, I’ve broken one of my rules of this little project, because this is an EP rather than an album. I didn’t realise this when I was listening to it, as there are nine tracks, which seems rather a lot for an EP. Regardless of this, I’m glad I listened, because I blooming loved it.

I saw Rag’n’Bone Man on Jools Holland on New Year’s Eve, and this was the first that I had ever heard of him. Since then, he’s come second in the BBC Sound of 2017. With his debut album due for release this year, it seems as though he is very much coming to the attention of the public at large, though I assume there are plenty of people out there who have known about him for years.

As I’ve mentioned before, I know nothing about music. I wouldn’t even really have known how to characterise this type of music. I’m reliably informed that it’s bluesy soul, with a bit of drum and bass, and rap thrown in for good measure. BBC Sound of 2017 says he “puts a modern twist on the raw soul of Joe Cocker.”

All I know is that I love his music. It’s so powerful, and raw, and it feels familiar in a wonderful way. My favourite track of all is No Mother; whether it comes from a real-life experience or not, it’s a powerful song about separating with the other parent of your child.

Now that I know that so far all we’ve had is EP releases from Rag’n’Bone man, I’m eagerly awaiting his debut album, Human, due for release in a couple of months.

Album of the Week 005 ~ Joanne by Lady Gaga

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Album : Joanne by Lady Gaga

Release Date : October 2016

My Favourite Tracks : A-YO, Joanne, Million Reasons, Hey Girl, Angel Down, Grigio Girls, Just Another Day

Album Notes
I don’t really know what happened with my love for Lady Gaga. I absolutely adored her first two albums, and then I didn’t really keep up with what she was doing. But when I started my music challenge, I decided to take a listen to her latest album, Joanne, and I’m so glad I did.

What I love most about Gaga is her ability to jump between music genres, while ultimately making really good, emotionally loaded pop music. It’s fun and deep at the same time, and her voice is flawless. I found it really hard to narrow down my favourite tracks, hence the choice of seven of the eleven tracks above! Though if I really had to choose, the fact that I haven’t been able to get Grigio Girls out of my head for days should give you an idea as to how much I love it, and A-YO is another stand out. I’m now going back to rekindle my love for her first two albums, and I’m going to give the other three a listen too.

Album of the Week 004 ~ We Are King by King

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Album : We are King by King

Release Date : February 2016

My Favourite Tracks : Supernatural, Hey

Album Notes
Another album that has appeared on many ‘Best of 2016’ lists, making it perfect for my ‘Listen to an album a week’ goal that is part of my 35 Before 35. It’s variously described as ‘dream-pop’, ‘atmospheric’, ‘ambient’, among other such adjectives, and it’s just that. It’s floaty, and hazy, and listening to it in the week before Christmas is probably not the best time to appreciate it.

I like it, but in all honesty it’s not entirely my cup of tea. At least, not a whole album of these songs; I tend to prefer something a little more upbeat. Supernatural is far and away my favourite track from the album, but the rest of it just doesn’t rock my socks. Maybe I’ll go back to it in the height of summer and see if I feel any differently about it.

Album of the Week 003 ~ Love and Hate by Michael Kiwanuka

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Album : Love & Hate by Michael Kiwanuka

Release Date : July 2016

Singles : Black Man in a White World, Love & Hate, One More Night

My Favourite Tracks : Black Man in a White World, Cold Little Heart, The Final Frame

Album Notes
This album has popped up on so many ‘Best of 2016’ lists that I thought it was about time I had a listen. I know he is critically revered, but aside from the odd song on the radio, he isn’t someone I’ve listened to an awful lot.

This is a great album, as everyone is saying. Even for someone like me, who just listens to music but doesn’t necessarily understand it all that well, I can hear just how great this album is. The first track, lasting ten minutes, and going for five minutes before we even get any vocals from Kiwanuka, is stunning, and sets the tone for the rest of the album.

This is exactly the type of album that I started this challenge for, to push myself out of my comfort zone slightly, and listen to things that I wouldn’t usually reach for on Spotify.

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